The Nidali

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
Part of an ongoing series set in the fantasy battle realm of Solstone. An Elven scientist beseeches his emperor to intervene against the bug-like menace known as Nidali by providing him with his research and findings on the matter.

Submitted: November 14, 2016

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Submitted: November 14, 2016

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Your Imperial and Royal Highness. Most gracious and merciful Emperor. Victor of a thousand battles. May your enemies abandon their aggression at the spectacle of your glory. Protector of the Elven peoples and custodian of the Holy City. Divine avatar of the God of Light, Mercia. Bless his name. Faithful and honourable husband to her Royal Highness, whose beauty is only exceeded by En’ten herself.

 

Most revered eminence I beseech thee, your most humble of servants, to view my writings. After decades of research and analysis, travelling to remote and inhospitable locations, and conversing with scientists and scholars across your great kingdom. I have illuminated the terrible fate that has befallen our Mercian cousins; the Dwarfs.

 

Oh Lord! Though they may stray from the path of Mercia, I implore you to deliver your peoples from the same fate as the Dwarfs.

 

 

Your most faithful servant,

Anjo Priyana

Venerable entomologist & Apothecary, Gozu clan

 

 

 

 

The Nidali are an insectoid race native to Ert. Residing underground in burrowed colonies, the dwarven race were the first ones to discover them; at great cost. These two races would have met when the dwarven tunnels connected with the Nidali burrows.

 

Nidali begin life with their queen producing eggs in her brood nest. Each egg resides in a cell of a combed wall where they will stay until they reach maturity. No one knows how many eggs the queen lays at any one time. Elven scientists and scholars have speculated between 10,000 and 100,000 eggs a year, basing their theories on the life cycle of lesser insects, environmental factors and biopsies.

 

The eggs hatch into larvae. In this larval stage, drones feed the larvae until they are ready to transform to the pupa stage. Scholars, once again, speculate that the drones premasticate their food and raise the larvae.

 

The majority of larvae will emerge as an adult Nidali drone. Drones take care of the Queen and the colony; cleaning, nursing, repairing, and foraging. Drones are approximately four feet tall, bipedal insects, with a chitin exoskeleton and translucent wings. Although they are not built for aggressive behaviour, they will defend their Queen with their serrated mandibles and clawed forearms.

 

An infected Dwarf performs the duty of defending the colony. It is unclear how a symbiote is able to find its way into its host as there is no record or evidence of this act occurring. Once again, Elven scientists and scholars theorise they may live in groundwater and find entry when consumed. Others postulate their entry is a lot more aggressive as they enter open cuts from battle and war. One thesis is that when the host urinates, the symbiote swims up the stream and enter through the urethra.

 

Whatever the case; both host and parasite revel in this mutual relationship. The symbiote provides unnatural strength and regenerative properties. While the host provides shelter, food, and protects the colony in return.

 

It has become unclear why the infected dwarves have changed their behaviour. Changing their role from one of protecting the colony and the Queen, to one of conquest. Perhaps the colony is growing too fast, or they may need new sources of food. Colonies may fight each other on occasion. Scientists conclude that this is a territorial issue more than anything.

 

There is no certified record of other species playing host to the Nidali symbiote. Although, it is only a matter of time. We must learn all we can to repel this insectoid incursion.

 

I say certified, because there has been a case from the lesser race of mortals known as humans. A band of adventurers exploring a deep cave discovered a dragon guarding a sizeable treasure horde. On careful inspection, the adventurers were unable to tell if the Dragon was asleep, or not. After much quiet deliberation, one adventurer decided to awaken the guardian.

 

The lone adventurer, sword in hand, crept up to the Dragon and pierced its bloated stomach. The Dragons stomach lining burst open, vomiting its writhing contents onto the hapless adventurer. Suffice to say, that day, none of the treasure was attained.

 

On no account has there been any evidence validating this story. The majority of Elven scientists and scholars will dismiss it as an elaborate story to scare human children or provide great entertainment in one of their drinking houses.


© Copyright 2017 Scott Selkirk. All rights reserved.

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